Our family are converted ! In France a simple yogurt is the dessert of choice for many families. I quickly adopted the idea and in the evening, I think it even helps me sleep (I read that somewhere !). As any family knows, the cost of pre-made yogurts adds up quickly as well as the temptation (fueled by your children) to buy the “flavoured” or “low fat” kind as there is so much on offer in the yogurt section !
So why not simplify things and make your own, its super super easy ! AND if you are already saying “I don’t have a yogurt maker”, well you don’t need one. I do believe that raw and whole milk makes a difference, so if you can get your hands on that….
- 1 liter of whole milk (raw if possible)
- 1 shop bought yogurt (whole milk)
- 1 Vanilla Bean cut in half lengthways (optional)
- Heavy bottomed saucepan
- A cooler
- A towel or blanket
Bring the milk and the vanilla bean to a boil (WATCH it or it will overflow) then turn right down. Let the milk simmer for 2 to 3 minutes then take it off the heat and pop a thermometer in it. Leave it to cool to 48° to 50°C (try to be precise)…. The shop bought yogurt needs to be at room temp or warmer, I place it next to the milk pan while it heating up. Remove the vanilla and add the yogurt to the milk and stir well, I use a stick blender quickly to make sure the yogurt is well blended into the milk.
Without waiting or your milk will start to cool, pour into small containers or one bigger container, close and place into a cooler that you have lined with a towel or blanket. Wrap the blanket around the yogurt pots and close the cooler. Leave the yogurt in the cooler for around 8 hours before removing it and placing it in the fridge. My yogurt (its actually my husband that makes it in our house…. MERCI) lasts for over a week in the fridge. It doesn’t really go off, it just gets a bit stronger in taste veering towards “cheesy” eventually.
Note that you can replace the shop bought yogurt with one of your own but from time to time use a shop bought one to make sure the ferments are active enough !
In our house, we usually just eat our yogurt with some unrefined sugar or honey, but I also like mixing in some jam or fruit coulis !
Bon appetît !